By John Kariuki
The Pest Control Products Board (PCPB) has raised the red flag over reports of pesticide misuse among farmers. The Board’s Chief Executive Officer Dr. Esther Kimani says,
“Many small scale farmers in Kenya are not using pesticides as instructed by manufacturers and State agencies, it has emerged.
Worse still, some of these small scale farmers do not wear full protective gear when applying the chemicals, exposing themselves and those around them to dangerous agrochemicals.”
Dr. Esther added, “For their safety, it is always recommended that farmers fit themselves fully with gloves, Overall, eye googles, face masks and mudboots when spraying agro-chemicals and use the products as recommended in the label.
Small scale farmers are mainly the ones with challenges of misuse of pesticides, thus lots of campaigns are needed to encourage them to use pesticides as per instructions on the label.
PCPB carries out risk assessment before pesticides are registered for use in Kenya and recommends how the products can be used safely. Some products are not allowed for use on fruits and vegetables and it’s important that pesticides are used for the purpose for which they are registered and in the recommended manner just like the medicines we take when we are sick.”